Rebound: When female entrepreneurs reinvent themselves
hub.brussels’ Rebound programme was launched on Tuesday night with a livestream. During the event, which took place in the prestigious Salle de la Rotonde at the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, experts and entrepreneurs who were able to reinvent themselves during the crisis set the tone for the programme, created specifically to support women impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
The Rebound programme is a key measure of hub.brussels’ reopening and redeployment plan. The Agency was mandated by the Government to spearhead the economic transition both during and after the health crisis.
Loubna Azghoud, Coordinator of Women in Business, the Brussels platform dedicated to female entrepreneurship, explains:
The crisis has shown us the limitations of an economic model based on profitability and productivity at any cost, which leaves behind human capital and natural resources which are essential to our survival. The time has come to think for tomorrow ; the aspiration for a more egalitarian economy must be an evidence.
Isabelle Grippa, CEO of hub.brussels, adds:
The lockdown, school closures and remote working have further put the brakes on the empowerment of female entrepreneurs. Our Rebound programme aims to kill two birds with one stone by initiating the relaunch and transition of female entrepreneurship in Brussels.
A programme to initiate the economic transition
“The economic transition requires changing our modes of production to make them more respectful of humans and the environment,” explains Marie Vanderheyden, Advisor for innovative economic models in the Trachte Cabinet. “It is necessary, given that our current economic model is based on growth, even though our resources are limited. The model must be reviewed using various tools, including implementing the Doughnut Model.”
Barbara Trachte, Secretary of State for the Economic Transition, applauds the success of the programme:
I’m thrilled to see that despite the crisis, the people of Brussels are staying motivated and that their entrepreneurial spirit is undiminished. This is the case even though the crisis has affected women more than men, due to the fact that they are employed in more precarious positions. The various tools offered by #Rebound will help them recover and empower themselves.
Entrepreneurship as a tool for empowerment
Although numbers are increasing, with 30% of women entrepreneurs in Brussels, the crisis tends to confine women to their private spheres, in particular due to school closures.
For Fatima Ftaich, co-founder of Vidya, “women are a powerful force and a fount of ideas in this economy. We must help each other, be confident and engage and change the status quo”.
And Sandrine Dixson-Declève, co-president of Club of Rome, concludes:
The Doughnut model is the minimum Brussels must implement to restore women’s dignity. The pandemic has demonstrated the resilience that humans are capable of in the very short term. We must view it as an opportunity to accelerate the transition.
#Rebound: 2 months to reinvent your company
Running from 6 October to 6 December 2020, the Rebound programme consists of about twenty workshops covering various subjects: new business models, financing, innovation, mentoring, networking, etc. Bringing together 23 public/private partners, this program is designed for Brussels entrepreneurs who want to adapt their business models and become players in the new economy, the programme is focused on four topics:
1) Economic transition
4) Digital transition
Although most of the workshops are reserved exclusively for about fifty chosen candidates who responded to a call for candidates, a few sessions will be accessible online to the general public.